As an entrepreneur, there are a large number of exciting milestones you get to pass, but one of the most thrilling is renting your very first office space. Up until this point, you will have been working out of your home, cafes, coffee shops, and communal areas, but this will be the first time that you have something that’s completely your own. That being said, there are lots of mistakes you can make throughout this process, so here are nine tips you can use to make things easier.
Make Sure You Really Need One
Years ago, businesses needed a dedicated office space to survive, but with the evolution of technology and telecommunication, this is no longer the case. Because of this, it’s important that you consider whether or not your business really needs to rent an office space. If you will work just as well at home or somewhere else, it’s much better that you save cash and do that instead.
Choose Somewhere Close To Your Team
When an office space is a necessity, it’s important that you choose somewhere close to your team. After all, you don’t want to lose good employees because you had to open an office. Thankfully, commercial property search tools make this easy, by allowing you to search by location. If you don’t have a team yet, opt for somewhere populated and full of potential talent.
Don’t Overlook Parking And Bike Storage
Although you want to be relatively close to your employees, many of them will still need or choose to drive to work each day. Because of this, it’s vital that you have somewhere they can park, preferably a secure and dedicated area. You should also make sure that there is a bike rack available, or, at the very least, that there’s enough storage space in the building for bikes.
Keep A Strict Budget In Mind
Renting an office space is going to be costly, which is why you need to make sure that you keep a strict budget in mind. There’s no point in putting yourself into loads of debt for a larger or more extravagant space, as this will stunt your growth and could put you out of business altogether. Make sure you’re clear on what you can afford and don’t forget to factor in unexpected expenses.
Consider Leasing Your Equipment And Furniture
As this is your first office, you don’t have any furniture or equipment to fill up the space. This means you’re going to have to go out and get some. Rather than buying brand new stuff, you should consider leasing it. This will be much cheaper in the short term and means that you’re not stuck with old technology when something newer and better comes out.
Never Sign A Multi-Year Lease
Just like you, landlords need to make money, which means that most of the ones you meet are going to try to lock you into a contract for as long as they possibly can. However, it’s important to remember that your business may not go the way that you expect, and could go under or grow much faster than you first thought. This means that you need to have the option to walk away.
Understand What You Are Responsible For
Before you go ahead and sign a lease, you need to look over it thoroughly and make sure that you understand what you’re responsible for when it comes to repairs. If you need to handle everything that goes wrong, then you need to make sure that you have money in your budget set aside for this. If your landlord is responsible, then ensure that they’ll complete repairs right away.
Find Out What You Can Customize
The moment you step foot in your new office, you’re going to want to make it your own, but, before you can do that, you need to check that it’s okay with your landlord. Most landlords of commercial properties are fine with you making some small changes, but yours may have rules on what you can do. Before you agree to anything, make sure you know what you can change.
Speak To An Expert For Help
Looking for an office space can be incredibly confusing, which can get overwhelming for those that have never done it before. With that in mind, you may want to find a real estate agent and ask them for some help. They have much more knowledge and experience that you and that will make the whole process a lot easier.
When you start looking for your first office space, make sure you remember these nine essential tips.